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Board Games

What do startup boards look like? We analysed the leading 30

Boards are important for large companies. Increasingly, as the Uber case brings out, they are too for startups. We analysed the composition of India's 30 leading Indian startup boards

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Setting up a board can be incredibly challenging and getting it right is critical to ensure the growth of any business. We studied 30 leading Indian startups across health, tech, e-commerce and logistics among others to get an insight into their board’s compositions.

The prisms for analysis were – (a) composition & structure, (b) the gender ratio and (c) the number of investors on a board.

The health of a startup board hinges, to a large degree, on adequate composition and diversity.

These startup boards range from as low as two members to as high as 10 members. According to the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA), a private company is required to have a minimum of two members on its board and one director in case of a one-person company. We categorised these startups based on the range of members on the board. The range is further divided on the basis of composition to study the founder vs investor ratio and the number of startups, which hire independent, nominee and employees on their board. Eighteen startups have investors on their board, fourteen have employees on board, four have nominee directors on board and only two startups have independent directors on their board. Twenty-five out of the thirty startups studied have one or more founder on the board. Most of these startups are also comprised of only founders and investors.

Hover over the three range categories, which are further divided into the name of the startups falling in that range, further sub-divided into their individual compositions:

1:7

The ratio of women to men in startup boards is dismal. For every seven male board members there is one female board member. The trend continues down to women independent directors, nominee directors and women employees occupying board positions. Eighteen out of the 30 startups analysed have no women on their board of directors.

Hover over the names of the startups to know the male to female ratio of their boards:


Investors galore

Twelve of the 30 startups analysed have two or more investors occupying a board position. In most cases, it is the same venture capital firms, which have stakes in multiple startups. We ranked the startups based on the number of investors occupying positions on their board.

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